Whether you’re raising a chile-chomping brood who like a little kick to their food, or kids who deem garlic and ginger (and anything else they don’t feel like eating) as “spicy,” most families have a place at the dinner table for tacos, tortillas and nachos, among others. Packed full of bright flavors that appeal to diners of all ages, and a ton of vegetables and protein to help little bodies grow, Mexican food offers something for the whole family. Whether you’re looking for a fun and tasty way to celebrate Cinco de Mayo, or just to expand your kids’ culinary horizons, here are some of the best places around town to take your niños for some stellar Mexican cuisine.
Pecado Bueno has expanded to four locations around Seattle and the Eastside, offering high-quality taqueria fare in casual, family-friendly settings. The complimentary chips and salsa bar keep hungry kids going until their food arrives, and the spacious patios and cozy fire pits are perfect spots to kick back on warmer evenings. A bonus feel-good factor: Pecado Bueno is heavily involved in the community, having donated more than $600,000 to neighborhood schools and local charities.
PHOTO: JOSHUA HUSTON
Popular Tacos Chukis now has four locations.
Tacos Chukis has long served Seattlites what many consider the best tacos in town from a tiny, elusive location on Capitol Hill. Lucky for us, they’ve recently expanded to more spacious, family-friendly spaces in Beacon Hill and South Lake Union, where it’s much easier to bring the kids for a taco fix. The al pastor is a house favorite — sweet slices of grilled pineapple play off smoky grilled pork — and don’t forget to top it with a dollop of housemade guacamole. Locations in Central District, Beacon Hill, South Lake Union and Capitol Hill.
Georgetown’s Fonda La Catrina offers contemporary spins on authentic Mexican food in a funky, eclectic setting. Their vegetarian options are a particular draw, and the popular weekend brunch is always packed with hungry families. The extensive menu begs for multiple visits; don’t miss their weekday happy hour from 3-6 pm, where crispy tostadas appeal to emerging palates as parents enjoy an excellent house margarita. 5907 Airport Way S.
Popular local mini-chain Cactus now has six locations, from the Eastside to West Seattle. Cactus serves innovative Southwestern and Mexican fare made from high-quality, locally sourced ingredients, and is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Wikki Stix will keep your little ones happy until dinner arrives, and the ever-popular quesadillas are big enough for two hungry kids to share. Their Alki location is located right across from the beach, so follow your meal with a stroll by the water. Various locations.
Señor Moose offers authentic, delicious central Mexican food in a colorful and cozy spot on Leary Way, just off the main Ballard strip. Breakfast is a particular standout, with a huevos rancheros you’ll be dreaming of for days, housemade chorizo with just the right amount of spice, and stellar chilaquiles you can order with a choice of housemade salsas: bright, zingy green, or deeply smoky red. Lunch and dinner offer excellent, reasonably priced tacos and a wide range of thoughtfully composed plates, including a fantastically complex mole sauce comprised of 25 spices and ingredients. The happy hour is one of Seattle’s (barely) best-kept secrets, with a queso fundido that kids love scooping up with warm tortillas, and some of the best guacamole in town. Bonus: the menu lists which part of Mexico each dish comes from, so you can give your kids a geography lesson as you eat. 5242 NW Leary Ave.